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GLEN CARBON - Glen Carbon Code Enforcement Officer Brian Hunt recently gave a presentation to village trustees updating them on various properties around the village, most of which have become code compliant, aside from two problem properties.

Hunt said so far, there have been 120 code enforcement citations issued in 2023. Most of these were issued for either junk storage, overgrown brush, parking in yards, and inoperable vehicles. Fines were collected on about 20 of those citations, and Hunt said the majority of them have since become compliant, either before or after going to court.

He also commended the work of Next Mile Lawn LLC, a local mowing company founded by a pair of brothers which the village has contracted for seasonal mowing work.

“They have done a tremendous job mowing for the village this year. It’s a couple of young brothers that decided to start their company from the ground up. The work they do is great, they have great attention to detail, which I appreciate, communication’s been great with them. A lot of times, they’ll work on the weekends - that’s not me asking them to do that, they’re volunteering to do that and mow the properties we need them to mow.”

So far this year, Next Mile Lawn has completed 39 mows for the city - some at the same locations, which Hunt referred to as “repeat offenders,” or properties neglected by their owners.

While Hunt said Glen Carbon was fortunate to not have many properties with several problems, two properties in particular continue to bring ongoing issues for the village.

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The first property, located on Rushmore Drive, has been abandoned by the son of the original owners, who are both deceased. The front of the property was once dominated by overgrown brush, with weeds sprouting through the driveway cracks and taxes left unpaid for over a year.

The village originally only maintained the grass until neighborhood complaints prompted Next Mile Lawns to tackle the overgrowth as well. They have since completed the first phase of the project, completely transforming the front of the property, and will move on to the second phase of removing the overgrowth from the property’s back yard.

The second property is located in the 200 block of Blue Ridge Drive and is currently owned by Diamante Capital LLC. Hunt said he’s been receiving complaints and citing the owner for months over his numerous violations at this and other properties around the village.

“Violations range from missing soffit around the house … a broken window in the front, behind the home it has a deck that’s falling apart, the fence in the backyard is falling apart, falling over onto neighboring properties,” Hunt said. “I have talked to the neighbors … they’re not happy with the way the home looks, but they understand the village is doing the best they can do to remedy the situation.”

Hunt alleged the owner of this and other problematic properties around the village met with village officials and promised to clean the properties up, but has failed to follow through on that promise.

“It’s been ongoing for almost a year. Myself and a couple other council members and Erika [Heil] met with [the owner] back on Sept. 21, 2023. There was a promise made that all his properties would be cleaned up in two weeks,” he said. “I followed up on those two weeks and next to nothing had been done, so we went back to citing. No corrections have been made and he has multiple properties within the village where he has these same issues - not to the extent of this, but still has the same issues.”

In June, the home’s back garage door was left open, as was the door leading from the garage into the house, allowing squatters to make their way into the home. After an inspection and walk-through from the Glen Carbon Police Department, Hunt requested the property owner secure the property. After a month of the owner failing to do so, the Public Works Department has since secured the property.

The property also has several problems on the inside, including exposed wiring, an exposed ceiling, and black mold on the ceiling and throughout the interior. Hunt said they’ve “hit a wall” as far as what to do with the property other than continue to maintain it, conducting “business as usual” until something is changed or corrected.

A full recording of the Glen Carbon Village Boards of Trustees meeting is available at the top of this story or on the Village of Glen Carbon Facebook page.

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